Can You Foil with the Cricut Joy?

Can You Foil with the Cricut Joy?

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Can you foil with the Cricut Joy? Well, not technically but there is a way to do it. Etsy vendor, TheLongJourney, has created a cool little adapter that allows you to use the nibs (is that what they’re called?) from the Cricut Foil Transfer Kit with the Cricut Joy.

There are some limitations to its use, but nothing too major and I will get into the specifics in the tutorial . Long story short, the adapter works great and I highly recommend it. It is super fun to use the Joy for foiling.

HOWEVER, use of the adapter may VOID your WARRANTY so proceed at your own risk.

You may also want to check out my tutorial on How To Make Stickers with the Cricut Joy

Please check out the video tutorial below or scroll down for instructions with photos:

Can You Foil with the Cricut Joy?

As I mentioned above, you can use the nibs from the Cricut Foil Transfer Kit in your Cricut Joy with an adapter created by Etsy vendor, TheLongJourney. You slide either the fine or medium nib from the Foil Transfer Kit into the adapter and the magnet in its base will grab it and hold it in place just like the Cricut housing does. But, the adapter fits in the Cricut Joy carriage just like the Joy blade. Pretty cool, right?

Cricut Foil Transfer Tool Adapter for Cricut Joy
Click to enlarge

Any Limitations to the Foil Adapter?

There are a couple of limitations to this adapter. According to the vendor, the bold tip from the Cricut Foil Transfer Kit doesn’t work in the adapter. I used both the fine and medium tips with it and they work great!

Also, the foiling process only works with the Cricut Joy when the design is set to Cut, not Draw. Since the Cricut Joy isn’t as heavy duty as the Maker or Explore machines, I suspect that it can’t provide enough pressure on the tip while in “draw” mode to transfer the foil. I tried it and my results were not great with any design set on Draw. Cut, however, worked like a charm.

Foil with teh Cricut joy: Draw vs Cut Settings Results
Click to enlarge

Another limitation of the Cricut Joy with the adapter is that you can’t change or remove the foil once it is on the mat and the project is started so if you have any multi-step designs, you will need to draw with a pen first, for example, and then hopefully be able to add the foil where you need it WITHOUT unloading the mat (put the design toward the bottom of the mat maybe?).

Tips on Choosing Designs to Foil

Since you are limited to designs you can “cut” with the Cricut Joy when using the foil adapter, there are a couple of things to keep in mind:

  • When you foil with the Joy, remember the result will be a foiled outline of whatever cut design you choose to use so pick something that is more detailed or interesting as an outline than a plainer image (eg. a pattern vs. a simple shape)
  • You can always try and customize designs you see in Cricut Design Space so that all of the layers are set to Cut instead of Draw or Foil. This won’t always work, but I encourage you to try it and see what you get.
  • If a project has Draw layers that can’t be changed, can you draw them with a pen in the Joy and then “cut” the foil layers? Maybe but this can get tricky since you CANNOT unload the mat between functions and it is tough to add or remove the foil from the mat once it is part-way into the machine.

Foiling an Insert Card Design

I think the easiest designs to foil with the Cricut Joy are many of the Insert Cards designs. They often have fun multi-shape cut designs that make for interesting foiled designs as well. You can search for them on the Projects tab on the left-hand tool bar in the Design Space Canvas or on the Home screen.

Cricut Design Space: Projects Tab
Click to enlarge

I chose the Happy Easter insert card design. I couldn’t customize it so just hit Make It and it opened on the Card Mat in Cricut Design Space.

Cricut Design Space: Design on Joy Card Mat
Click to enlarge

The Insert Cards will default to the Card Mat automatically because that is what they are designed for, but when using the foil adapter, I think it’s easier to move the design on the mat before making it. So, I click on the drop down menu under the mat image shown on the right sidebar and select On Mat.

You will get a warning message basically saying you shouldn’t change the mat and are you sure you want to do that? Choose Yes and the design will appear on the regular Joy mat. Click on the design to select it and move it into the middle and with the bottom of the design aligned with the 6″ line toward the bottom of the mat.

Cricut Design Space: Design Moved on Joy Standard Mat
Click to enalrge

This will allow you enough space all the way around the design to cover it with cardstock and tape the foil in place. Click on Continue.

Select Base Material in Cricut Design Space

The screen will switch and ask you to Select Base Material. While experimenting with the foiling adapter, I discovered that materials with a pressure setting of around 250 – 260 seemed to work best. Higher settings can rip the foil. Lower settings can have inconsistent results. To determine the material cut pressure this, click on the Browse All Materials link.

Cricut Design Space: Browse All Materials
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Navigate to the bottom of the materials list that appears and click on the Material Settings link.

Cricut Design Space: Materials Settings
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At the top of the menu that appears, you will see columns labeled for Material Name, Cut Pressure, Multi-Cut and Blade Type.

As you scroll down the list, keep an eye on the Cut Pressure column and select a material with a setting of 250 – 260. I chose Deluxe Paper Foil Embossed because it has a cut pressure of 257.

Cricut Design Space: Cut Pressure Settings
Click to enlarge

Close this menu and click on Browse All Materials again. Scroll to the material you like and click on it to select it. The screen will now show that the material has been selected and what you should load into the Cricut Joy.

Cricut Design Space: Load Tools Screen
Click to Enlarge

Leave the Pressure dropdown menu set to Default. Instead of loading the Fine Point Blade, you should load the foil adapter with the Medium foiling tip inserted into it. Simply insert the medium foil transfer tip into the adapter making sure the end with the two lines on it is facing out. To install it into the Joy, unhook the latch on the Cricut Joy carriage, lift the blade out and replace it with the foil adapter. Be sure to press the adapter down into the opening until it rests on the white portion of the carriage. Close the latch to lock it in.

Foil with Cricut Joy: Foil Adapter Loaded into Joy Carriage
Click to enlarge

Load the Mat with Foil & Cardstock

Cut a piece of white cardstock to 4.25″ x 5.5″ and place in the center of a Standard Cricut Joy mat, lining up the bottom edge (or slightly overlapping) with the 6″ line on the mat (as we did in Cricut Design Space).

Foil with Cricut Joy: Cardstock on Mat
Click to enlarge

Trim a piece of Rose Gold foil, sized standardly at 4″ x 6″ down to 4″ x 5.25″. Carefully place it in the center of the cardstock WITHOUT touching the sticky parts of the mat. If you do, the foil will stick (how do you think I know that? Lol). Using the removable tape that comes with the foil, grab one edge of the foil with the tape, overlapping about 1/8″ of the foil with the tape and press down along one side of the cardstock.

Foil with Cricut Joy: Taping Foil Down
Click to enlarge

Now go to the opposite side of the foil and again, grab the foil with the tape. Once the tape has it, pull the foil as straight as you can while pressing  the tape down to get it as flat as possible over the cardstock. Repeat on the final two sides.

Foil with teh Cricut Joy: Foil Taped Down to Mat
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Load this mat into the Cricut Joy.

Foil the Design with the Cricut Joy

Return to Cricut Design Space. Check that the software sees the mat has been loaded and press Go to start the foiling process.

Cricut Design Space: Click Go
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The Cricut Joy isn’t super fast while foiling but it gets the job done. The first couple of times you use the foil adapter, I suggest you keep an eye on the machine just in case.

Foil with the Cricut Joy: In Process
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Unload the Mat from the Cricut Joy & Reveal the Design

Once the Joy completes the design, return to Cricut Design Space and click on Unload and then Finish in the lower right.

Cricut Design Space: Unload Joy Mat
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Remove the mat from the machine, unpeel the tape (you can save it and use it again), remove the foil and voila, a beautiful new foiled image!

Foil with teh Cricut Joy: Foil Complete
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Remove the cardstock from the mat by flipping the mat over and peeling the mat away from the cardstock.

Color the Foiled Design 

You can leave the foiled Easter design as is, but I decided to add a bit of color to it.

The transferred foil resists alcohol markers (as long as you don’t get it too wet), so it’s easy to color. I choose to use Spectrum Noir Classique markers in LG1 and PP1.

Foil with the Cricut Joy: Colored Image
Click to enalrge

I also filled in some of the dots with Nuvo Glitter Drops in White Blizzard to add some sparkle to the card.

Assemble the Foiled Easter Card

Create a card base by cutting a piece of heavy weight white cardstock to 4.25″ x 11″ and folding in half. Trim down the foiled design to 3-7/16″ x 4-11/16″. Cut a piece of white fun foam slightly smaller than the foiled design and adhere to its back. Die cut a piece of light pink cardstock with the second largest die in the Elizabeth Craft Designs Dotted Scallop Rectangles die set. Trim a piece of light green shimmer cardstock to 4″ x 5 – 1/4″. Adhere each element working from largest to smallest into the center of the white card base, layering them as you do this. Enjoy!

Foil with the Cricut Joy: Completed Card
Click to enlarge

Questions or Comments?

If you have any questions, please leave me a comment below and I will get back to you soon. Want to just tell me how much you loved this tutorial? Please leave me a comment below – lol!

Foil with the Cricut Joy Card
A good look at the foil


I would also appreciate any ideas you may have for topics to cover related to the software for Cricut (Design Space), Silhouette (Studio) or Brother (Canvas) and any suggestions you may have on projects to create with the Cricut Maker, Cricut Joy, Silhouette Cameo 4 or the Brother Scan N Cut DX. Please leave any requests you have in the comments. I appreciate you taking the time to visit and read my blog. Thanks!


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